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FAST AND FURIOUS

About The Production
A 1998 Vibe magazine article on street racing clubs set the wheels in motion for what would become one of the most beloved and profitable franchises in Universal Pictures' history. In 2001, we met champion underground street racer Dominic Toretto and his archnemesis, LAPD police officer Brian O'Conner. Over the course of two hours in The Fast and the Furious, we watched two men on opposite sides of the law race stunning machines, brawl together and form an unlikely, begrudging friendship.

Though they went their separate ways at the end of the film—Dom as an illegal ex-pat to Mexico and Brian as an FBI agent in Miami—we followed Brian's career in the second episode, 2 Fast 2 Furious, and caught a brief glimpse of Dom at the end of the third actioner of the franchise, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift.

With the subsequent movies, the series continued to build an international fan base and rack up impressive box-office grosses. The lasting visual of Dom thundering across the Mexican border at the end of the original, however, left moviegoers wanting more adventures from our antihero…as well as more stories about the two women in his world— Dom's girlfriend Letty and his sister Mia (who happens to be the love of Brian's life).

Eight years after filmgoers first embraced the blistering stunts performed by and passion shared between Dom/Letty and Brian/Mia, producer Neal Moritz wanted to again deliver a film that takes the pulse of pop culture. He knew it was the right moment to bring audiences the fourth installment of the popular series. It was time to come home. It was not, however, always a given that this chapter would be greenlit. Explains Moritz: "We've had a great time and a very successful run with the first three. But if we were really going to go to the next level, we had to bring back Vin and Paul.”

To make that happen would take almost a decade of planning and endless coordination. Says the producer: "We had a lot of conversations over a lot of years. It took schedules meeting up and our coming up with a great story that actually would be worthy of the two of them coming back. We were really lucky to pull it off.”

Reuniting the original foursome of Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Michelle Rodriguez and Jordana Brewster began, simply enough, with Diesel's wildly successful cameo in Tokyo Drift, directed by Justin Lin. After seeing a rough cut of the film, Diesel agreed to appear in the final act of the third episode as Han's (SUNG KANG) friend who arrives to challenge LUCAS BLACK's character, Sean Boswell, to a race.

Over the course of several hours on set, the director and Diesel established an easy rapport. Lin's attention to minutiae, coupled with his ability to layer characterization amidst powerful action, appealed to the performer who has made a name for himself by developing characters in additional action hits such as xXx and the Pitch Black/Chronicles of Riddick series. Based on the audience response to Diesel's cameo, Moritz knew that fans were eager to revisit the Dom-Brian saga. Of the partnership, the producer notes: "The combination of the two of them and seeing how they approach the same scene together is something we can't invent. That rapport and chemistry either happens on screen or it just doesn't.”

Echoes producer Fottrell of the connection Diesel and Walker infused in the characters: "A brotherhood still exists between the two. One is brought up on the bad side of the tracks, the other on the good side. Brian is now blending into Dom's world, and they have each other's backs. That blood ethic exists between the two of them so that they protect one another, no matter who's right or who's wrong.”

Recalls Diesel, who returns as both American muscle

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